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Human Computer

Human computer | Wikiwand (Wikiwand)

The term "computer", in use from the early 17th century (the first known written reference dates from 1613), meant "one who computes": a person performing mathematical calculations, before electronic computers became commercially available. "The human computer is supposed to be following fixed rules; he has no authority to deviate from them in any detail." Teams of people were frequently used to undertake long and often tedious calculations; the work was divided so that this could be done in parallel.

Since the end of the 20th century, the term "human computer" has also been applied to individuals with prodigious powers of mental arithmetic, also known as mental calculators.

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